Last year, Pieter Gaillard PhD left to-BBB, the company he founded, because he did not agree with the new direction set out by the majority of directors and shareholders. “We had just received another round of financing, so there was more in our bank account than ever before. Less than six months later, they filed for bankruptcy.”
This could have been the end of a promising startup, based on a new method to help drugs to pass the so-called blood brain barrier. But Gaillard decided to give his dream another chance. Just after leaving to-BBB, he had already founded Eyesiu, a company aimed at ophthalmological patients. But when the curator of his former company called him, he did not have to think very long: “In March, we closed the deal. With the help of three of my investors, I had bought back all relevant patents and results and I was free to act again.”
One of the first things Gaillard did, was go back to Taiwan, where both the production and part of the research of his original company had been based. There, he started rebuilding everything. “It is my aim to resume product development, together with parties who understand our products. My Asian partners and I trust each other deeply, so that's an important foundation for our new company, 2-BBB. It took quite some time to get all the paperwork in order."
Bankruptcy laws in Taiwan are very different from ours, so I had to explain a lot, have the purchase agreement translated into Taiwanese, etcetera.
"I have one advantage: We run the company with very low costs now, so I'm free to move at my own pace. But of course, I'd love to be developing products to make people better. Everything is moving in the right direction now, so I hope next year, things will be back to normal.”
Interview by Pieter van Megchelen
Photo by Rob Overmeer
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